How to Clean Stainless Steel Appliances (& More) With Natural Products

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Whether you have a stainless steel refrigerator, sink, or pots and pans, it’s inevitable that visible water stains and fingerprints will show up at some point. I think my stainless steel appliances get more fingerprints than my sliding glass door, which says a lot especially because I have an always-muddy 10-year-old boy at home. Since I don’t like to use harsh chemicals in my home, I’ve discovered a few ways to keep all my stainless steel appliances looking fresh just by using items I already have in my kitchen. Check out my natural cleaning secrets for how to clean stainless steel appliances (and more):

1. Use vinegar and olive oil for appliances. Clean the surface of your appliance with a 50/50 solution of vinegar and water. Then dry it with a clean rag. Next, pour a dab of olive oil on a rag and rub with the grain of the stainless steel. The oil buffs out any watermarks (or let’s be real, dried tomato sauce) from the stainless steel surface. Next, pour a dab of olive oil on a rag and rub with the grain. This is also an easy way to spot clean and make your refrigerator and dishwasher shiny again.

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2. Get a clean sink with baking soda and lemons. Sprinkle baking soda all over your sink. Then rub half of a fresh lemon (or any citrus fruit) over the sink. Rinse and repeat. When done, toss your lemon in the garbage disposal to freshen it up as well. Not only does this trick remove any watermarks, it also disinfects.

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3. Scrub pots and pans with baking soda and vinegar. I love my stainless steel pots, pans, and wok, but I hate when I burn something and my cookware stains. To solve this problem, simply pour 1/2 cup of vinegar in your pot and add 1/2 cup of baking soda. After the bubbling stops, gently scrub off the stain with a ball of aluminum foil. Don’t worry though; the foil doesn’t scratch the pan. I tried it.

What not to use on your stainless steel:

  • Chlorine bleach or any product with chloride because it can cause the steel to develop rust stains or corrode.
  • Steel wool or steel brushes, which will scratch your appliances and pots and pans.
  • Abrasive cleaners will also scratch your cookware.
  • Dirty or hard water will stain your appliances.